08/29/10 5:41 PM ET
Lindstrom's bullpen session goes well
By Brian McTaggart / MLB.com
Lindstrom was originally scheduled to throw Saturday and begin a Minor League rehab on Monday for Double-A Corpus Christi, but the back began bothering him again and moved back his bullpen session by one day.
"I'm not trying to throw as hard as I can out there," Lindstrom said. "I was just trying to get a feel for the mound again and stuff. We're going to continue to reevaluate how I feel and go from there. I'm anticipating an outing with the Double-A team within the next couple of days, so it should be fine. It's a day-to-day thing. Whenever I wake up, I try to see how I feel, but today was a good day."
This has been a frustrating stretch for Lindstrom, who struggled through back issues and lost his job as closer just prior to going on the DL. He's going to take the day off Monday, but is encouraged his arm feels great.
"I was making really good progress in Philly, and the last couple of days started to feel the spasms come back a little bit and we tried to stay off it," Lindstrom said. "That's why we pushed my bullpen back to today. Today I was waking up and feeling a little cranky, but we did the things we needed to do to get ready to throw another 'pen. It went well."
Tight hamstring keeps Bourn day-to-day
NEW YORK -- Michael Bourn's legs are his most valuable weapon, so when his left hamstring started to tighten up on him Sunday he didn't want to take any chances.
Bourn left Sunday's loss to the Mets in the eighth inning with a strained hamstring. He said he was day-to-day and hoped to be able to play in Monday's series opener against the Cardinals in Houston, but don't expect the Astros to rush him to action.
Bourn said he first injured the hamstring beating out an infield hit in the third inning Sunday. He left the game in the eighth.
"It's all right," he said. "It got tight on me earlier in the game, and that's why some balls I couldn't run out. Before it got too bad, I came out. I knew better than to try to keep going in there and to try to run again. You could feel the tightness and it was hot out there. Instead of being dumb, I tried to be smart."
Bourn's single Sunday gave him an eight-game hitting streak. He's batting .382 during the streak with a .432 on-base percentage and five stolen bases. His infield hit was his National League-leading 32nd of the season.
Wallace relying on Astros' staff during slump
NEW YORK -- Astros manager Brad Mills had a long talk Saturday with struggling rookie first baseman Brett Wallace, who was out of the lineup for a second consecutive day Sunday. Wallace is hitting .187 and began Sunday in a 5-for-45 slump.
"He seems to be handling it extremely well and really looking at it from a good angle," Mills said. "This kid's got a good head on his shoulders and is really quiet, and observes a lot and listens and pays attention to what's going. I think he's going to be OK. Everybody goes through a tough time, and it's not the first time a young kid is going through issues."
Both Mills and Wallace were encouraged by his final two at-bats Friday in which Wallace struck out looking during a 12-pitch at-bat in which he fouled off seven pitches and then shot an opposite-field single to left field in the seventh.
"The last few weeks we've been working and I've felt a lot better, rhythm-wise, and my hands are starting to get back to where they need to be," Wallace said. "I know I'll get there. I'm just taking those steps every day, and I think that helps."
Wallace, 24, doesn't get too caught up in video while he's not playing and instead relies on bouncing ideas off hitting coach Jeff Bagwell and third-base coach Dave Clark.
"A lot of it has to do with being in rhythm at the plate and part of that is going up to the plate and knowing you're going to get a hit," he said.
Manzella reflects on Katrina anniversary
NEW YORK -- Sunday marked the five-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina striking New Orleans, the city in which Astros shortstop Tommy Manzella was born and raised. Manzella said he doesn't reflect on the storm too much, but is proud of the way the Crescent City has rebounded.
"It's not really something you want to remember much," he said. "The city's come a long way in the last five years, and hopefully we've learned from our mistakes as far as city planning goes and levy construction and things like that. The city got an opportunity for a fresh start, and it looks like we're moving in a positive direction, infrastructure-wise."
In his first pro season in 2005, Manzella was with rookie league Tri-City when Katrina destroyed his childhood home just east of New Orleans by flooding it with 14 feet of water. Manzella was playing in Lowell, Mass., when the storm hit, but none his family members were hurt.
"It was a difficult couple of days," he said. "There's a lot of things you can replace, but you can't replace someone's life. There were a lot of people who died in the tragedy, but during the hurricane and after, but for my family everyone came out healthy and fine. You always try to take a positive out of everything, and that's definitely what we took."
Michaels thinks Houston a good fit for him
NEW YORK -- Backup outfielder Jason Michaels has proven to be a good fit with the Astros, so much so that he'd like to return to Houston next year. Michaels was signed to a one-year deal for $800,000 with a club option for $900,000 or a $100,000 buyout.
"I like this group here and I love the staff," Michaels said. "I think it's worked, personally. I think Houston's a great place to play. I'd definitely love to come back."
Michaels entered Sunday tied for third in the Majors with 10 pinch-hit RBIs after going 11-for-47 with two homers and 10 RBIs as a pinch-hitter this year. He made his ninth start of the season in left field Sunday and his 22nd overall. He has also started in eight games in center, three in right and two at designated hitter.
"It's a tough role, but it's been working," he said. "I still think I still have a lot more improvement, but I'd like to come back here."
Michaels has watched the roster change shape around him as the Astros infuse younger players into their core. Michaels, 34, and fellow bench player Geoff Blum are two of the most veteran players in the clubhouse and have been an influence.
"I know I feel like I've done some teaching this year more," Michael said. "We've got some good talent in here and some good players. I think it's a good group."
Second baseman Jeff Keppinger, on the disabled list following a toe injury, is scheduled to get three at-bats Sunday during a Minor League game with Double-A Corpus Christi. ... Geoff Blum started Sunday for the first time since Aug. 19 after missing about a week with a sore neck. ... Carlos Lee started his second consecutive game at first base Sunday, with manager Brad Mills opting to have the burly slugger play the infield instead of Citi Field's spacious left field.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.